Ten Thoughts on the NFL: Chicago Bears and beyond

Ronald Martinez

Please enjoy my NFL thoughts this week, and be sure to chime in with a few of your own in the comment section.

1) It's looked like defensive end Jadeveon Clowney was locked into the top pick for a couple weeks now, but while listening to the radio this morning the chatter was that quarterback Johnny Manziel was back in consideration for the Houston Texans.

Over at NFL.com they are reporting another possibility for the Texans, and he's a better defensive scheme fit than Clowney. According to Ian Rapoport, Buffalo 3-4 outside linebacker Khalil Mack is also in play for Texans GM Rick Smith, and of course they are still contemplating trading back.

The last time the Texans held the #1 overall pick they had Mario Williams locked up a day before the draft, so I wouldn't rule out them having things in order before Thursday night.

2) Speaking of Manziel, I caught Jon Gruden's QB Camp featuring Manziel on ESPN over the weekend and came away impressed. I'm not as bothered by his cocky nature as some, and his size should't matter with how much movement is built into offenses these days. I highly doubt whomever drafts him will want him to play in a strict drop back passing system anyway.

He will have to curb some of the unnecessary chances he takes, but that's also part of what makes him such a dangerous playmaker. He's an accurate passer in the pocket and while on the move, which leads me to believe that with some technique work, he'll be a very good pro QB. I'll be rooting for him; I just hope he doesn't end up in the NFC North.

For those of you that feel Johnny Football is nothing more than an over-hyped bust in waiting, please enjoy this GIF of him and the last great college quarterback that was over-hyped and busted out of the NFL.

You're welcome.

3) In Minnesota's brand new Norv Turner coordinated offense, they will utilize pro bowl running back Adrian Peterson more in the passing game. That's obviously good news for the wear and tear on his 29 year old body, but with Matt Cassel, Christian Ponder and a soon to be drafted rookie under center for the Vikes, will it really matter?

With just one playoff appearance the last four years, a new coaching regime and possibly a new QB to break in, how much more time does Minnesota have with an effective Peterson?

4) I've talked about the scouting reports from Stephen White, retired NFL player and now SB Nation contributor before, but now they have all his work in a nice tidy little package.

For more info on Jadeveon Clowney, Khalil Mack, Aaron Donald, Timmy Jernigan, Greg Robinson, Jake Matthews, Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans, Anthony Barr, Kony Ealy, Taylor Lewan, Kelvin Benjamin, Michael Sam, Ra'Shede Hageman, Brandin Cooks, Zack Martin, Dee Ford, or Louis Nix III then click here.

I'd say about half of those players are legitimate prospects for the Chicago Bears.

5) So this happened...

The biggest shocker to me was no mention of those pants in the tweet.

6) Yesterday was May the 4th, and if you are a fan of Star Wars, you know the significance of the day. Check out this Star Wars themed NFL mock draftwhich is easily my favorite mock draft so far.

Chewbacca going #1 overall was a bit surprising, and as expected the Raiders threw a wrench into things at number five, and Luke Skywalker falling to the Minnesota Vikings is a bit disconcerting, but I love the Chicago Bears selection at 14. Even if they did spell his name wrong...

Jabba the Hut
The Bears need an anchor on the defensive line, so they grab Hut to bring instant stability. Hut will shut down the run because he occupies so much space. But I would wonder is if he's going to get the ball during goal-line situations.

With Hutt inside the Bears could roll out some ingenious packages. I think a 1-5-5 look from Mel Tucker would really confuse offenses. Also I think drafting Salacious Crumb in the 7th would go a long way into easing some of Hutt's character concerns. Crumb would act as a security blanket for the big guy.

7) If the NFL Draft was in Chicago would you attend?

If those two cities are in the running along with New York, you have to believe Chicago is the odds-on favorite. N.Y.: been there, done that. And L.A., how about getting a team first?

8) Even though some of the QBs may slip out of the top 10 and perhaps into the second round, that could still benefit the Bears. It may not push the top rated defenders further down the 1st round, but it will push some 2nd rounders down to them at 51. There are still a few QB needy teams picking at the top of each round, and at some point the run on signal callers will occur.

One other position run to keep an eye on is the wide outs. Mike Mayock of the NFL Network is predicting as many as six WRs could go in the first round and CBS Sports has 14 receivers with either a 1st or a 2nd round grade.

9) The more and more I think about the Bears first round pick, I think it'll be Louisville safety Calvin Pryor. I have a feeling that Aaron Donald will be either picked by a surprise team early -- like Minnesota at 8 -- or a team will trade in front of the Bears to get Donald.

10) Not everyone has Donald going top 15, as the latest mock draft from SB Nation not only has the Bears passing on Donald, but also passing on Pryor. Here's whom they mocked to Chicago.

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, S, Alabama

A smart series of free-agent signings improved the defensive line. That lessens the need to take Aaron Donald here. The Bears need to do something about that secondary, which was prone to giving up big plays last season.

For the record, I do like Clinton-Dix as a prospect over Pryor. I just think Bears GM Phil Emery would opt for the more physical of the two safeties. Clinton-Dix is the bigger of the two (6'1", 208 to 5'11", 207), while Pryor is more compactly built and packs a bigger punch.

With just three days until the draft, it's your turn to sound off...

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